(Whistling) “Oh, don’t mind me. I’ll just leave this here. Pardon? Oh, no. I’d prefer not to leave my name. Thank you.”

103

 

 

He said that he didn’t think much about it for a long time.

Then something brought it up.

2009-02-04 19.55.01

Note: This story is a story. It has other parts.

2009-02-04 19.56.07

I’ll tell them if I have to.

If Audubon had been

a different sort

of man

he wouldn’t have seen

the patterns in the flocks

how pigeons could look like waves

rolling in the sky

*****

What is it that makes us want to write down the way

that the shape of a single tree can remind us of all the names we call God?

*****

Those old mapmakers

and notetakers

died trying to explain

that it was treacherous

and beautiful,

to see the ice rise up

and to hear how it squealed

against the sides of the ship

that there was no fairness

in any of it, only stories to be told about how they saw the world in constellations drawn by cartographers

and cartomancers

dancers all

of the most quiet

and bold sort

When the world was new, every single thing beyond the horizon was unknown

and the way the snakes gathered across whole acres was a terrible and wondrous thing to behold.

Those plains in Argentina, they belonged to the snakes.

The thrill that came from crossing into windblown worlds of slithering and feathered things

of tooth and nail

and the strange human wailing

of the women who sing

when something

that they love dies…

Well, it just had to be written down, those new lines

between animal and human, boundaries re-penned, with conquests etched into skin and stone

writ by bone

and steel

ash from so many fires

Oh, the terrible thrill

that you could be there, to see and to hear

that you put yourself there

or were put there

as an arrow on a chart

you did not draw

To know though, that you are a very special sort of man, to go such places, to have such a deep human curiosity about what it might feel like

to witness

to walk in

to take a world

that isn’t ours

because it’s just so

damned stunning

the things to be seen

in the branches

and fields.

*****

Do people with adventuresome blood lose their minds when they can’t explore?

Do their hearts grow stolid and break when there seems to be nothing new to discover, do they feed their souls on the meager offerings of crocus in the late-snow, how it is such a remarkable thing, that shade of purple bursting out of all that frozen water?

***

And in the meantime, there is a man driving down the coast

and wondering if he should’ve

pulled the trigger

and if he should have told her

that he was that sort of man?

The syntax of symbols

meant nothing under lights

shaped like full moons

in the indoors

as she explained,

“For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”

As she said this, she no longer knew if it was true.

She asked, “Is it really fair?”

 It was an impossible question to answer, given the sort of man he was and the sort of man he was not.

*****

The question is whether or not being a bee in someone’s bonnet is the best way to encourage a shift in consciousness or to make an appeal to ethics. It’s bothersome, especially when situations are complex and people’s sense of personal integrity gets dragged into it.

People get defensive. The bee is a nuisance.

Who listens to nuisance?

2009-06-23 12.04.10

098

In the meantime, I have been daydreaming again about that period of time when I was pretty sure I was establishing something about the origins of written language on the basis of cloudforms.

I feel like I made a wrong turn somewhere.

I want to get back there, to where I was with that belief.

A belief like that changes the world, at least for the person who believes.